With each decade I am honing in on the handbag that works best for my life, and while each of us will need something tailored to how we uniquely live, our responsibilities, our schedule, our preferred signature style, there are some fundamentals a quality handbag should have if we would like it to function for both our everyday (going to and from work, errands, etc.) and travel (carrying the necessities to enable us each to have what we need to keep the life we live moving forward).
Here is what I have realized I need for comfort, function and style:
- a large, roomy tote, but one with compartments to maintain organization in order to find what I need quickly.
- a large drop that functions with the length of my long arms so I can easily place it over my shoulder with one hand.
- the height of the tote needs to be able to encompass the height of my water bottle and/or tallest daily item.
- a special compartment for my water bottle so that it doesn’t tip over and spill over the contents of my handbag (argh – that has happened too many times with my previous tote)
- a zipper (sturdy in design) that enables me to have privacy regarding the contents of my handbag while traveling.
- a width that is wide enough to hold a laptop comfortably
- available in a long-lasting fabric (in this case leather) that is available in a color that works with nearly anything I might wear.
(By the way, this NOT a sponsored post. I am sharing this post because I am extremely happy with what I have discovered, and it worked with my budget quite well.)
Having had two handbags, one for eight years that I would take to school during the work week and a second tote that I have had for four years that I would use when not at school, I began to seek out a tote that I could use for all occasions. Mainly because, get this, I was using a third tote that I had had for 10+ years for my travel and carry-on needs. This was absurd and unnecessary, but it all had to do with what I wanted to travel with me (the necessary size) and the color of the tote.
During the past six or so months I have been searching for a navy leather tote, and while there are many navy totes available, there are as many differing price points as well. The keys, as I shared above, were clear in my mind, so it took some time, but I finally found exactly what I was looking for.
For over a month now I have been using Cuyana’s Classic Leather Zipper Tote with a brushed suede tote organization insert as seen in this post. The navy tote has revealed itself to be everything I was looking for, and I couldn’t be more pleased. The key for me with this tote is the organization insert. I have always loved large totes, but not the disorganization that ultimately prevails after just a few days of use.
No more. With the organization insert (available in four different colors), there is a safe and secure place for my water bottle, a sleeve for my laptop for travel, and smaller compartments, as you can see in the images below, for the other items I need on a daily basis – brush, lip balm, pens, personal necessities, etc. – there is also a clip for my keys so I don’t have to dig endlessly on the bottom of my tote to find them.
While I chose the zipper option, there is the traditional classic tote with no zipper. I went back and forth on this choice, but ultimately, I am happy I chose the zipper as my totes have the amazing talent of being able to fall over or tip over or fall upside down when I really don’t want it too (is yours talented like that as well?) ;). But more importantly, I do like the idea of having some privacy even when I do need to bring a large tote along for what I need.
There are many different colors of totes to choose from and sizes, but the price point was fair for the quality I received, especially compared to other totes I saw while trying to find what I was looking for. Also, Cuyana is a brand to support. Cuyana was founded by Karla Gallardo and Shilpa Shah whose may purpose in creating the company was to create products of intention that were made with integrity. The fewer the items we have the better is their approach as well, so producing quality products is their goal; consequently, I couldn’t think of a better working premise to align with as TSLL than Cuyana.
- all leather totes can be monogrammed
~Shop their new updated Oversized Tote – the Double Loop Bag (in similar colors) here.
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